Wolesi Jirga tresses diplomatic end to Torkham unrest
KABUL (Pajhwok): The Wolesi Jirga on Wednesday condemned Pakistan border forces’ attack on Afghan forces in Torkham border, asking the Afghan government to resolve the issue through diplomatic channels.
Reports say Afghanistan and Pakistan have increased the number troops on their sides of the Torkham border after clashes between the two sides over the issue of fencing the border and constructing a new gate by the Pakistani forces.
The skirmish erupted on Sunday when an Afghan border guard was killed and six others were wounded and intermittent exchanges of fire continued until last night when another Afghan border guard was killed and five others wounded. Pakistani forces have also suffered casualties during the cross border firing.
Local officials in Nangarhar province said the previous skirmishes left two Afghan border policemen and two children dead and another 18 border policemen wounded since Sunday.
The lower house of parliament in a statement condemned Pakistani forces for attacking Afghan border guards and said construction of the gate and installation of fences on the border were against the bilateral agreement between the two countries.
“The Wolesi Jirga condemns attack on Afghan border forces along the Durand Line and in Torkham township. It considers the construction of facilities on the border against the bilateral agreement of the two countries.”
The statement asked the unity government to set aside its internal differences and announce a clear stance on protection of Afghanistan territory as well as preventing any malicious attempts from neighbours.
The house also urged the government to resolve the border tension through diplomatic channels and negotiations.
Hazrat Ali, who represents Nangarhar in the Wolesi Jirga, said all Afghans were ready to defend their country.
However, he said: “War is against the interests of both countries as it can destabilises the states, both the countries should resolve the problem through negotiations because this problem would not be resolved without talks.”
A lawmaker from Kabul, Ramazan Bashardost, said: “If the government really wants to put an end to the problem, all the three pillars should hold a joint meeting to be participated by government leaders and make a serious decision.”
Second deputy speaker Niamatullah Ghafari also stressed a peaceful end to the border tension and said: “War is in no one’s interest in the current situation, so all should try to use diplomatic channels to resolve the problem.”
He praised Afghan forces for resisting against Pakistani forces and asked the government to closely follow Pakistan’s attacks on the border.
Download “Pajhwok” mobile App, on your smartphone to read and access latest news, features, interviews, videos and photos about Afghanistan.